Messi: I have dreamed about this many times, I knew it would happen

The forward finally won a trophy with Argentina as they beat Brazil in the Copa America final

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Lionel Messi could not hide his happiness after winning his first trophy with Argentina. After lifting the Copa America, the Albiceleste captain said "I needed to get the moneky off my back of winning something with the national team" and added that it's "crazy how happy I feel, I can't explain it."

Messi added: "Many times I've had to leave (international tournaments) sad, but I knew that it was going to have to happen. There's no better moment, beating Brazil in Brazil...

"I have dreamed about this many times. I have thought about my family, my dad, my siblings... We've had to suffer a lot of times, it's been the same for them as for me.

"I had a lot of confidence in this group of players, that's been getting stronger since the last Copa America, when we saw a lot of good things.

"It's been a lot of days in the bubble, without seeing loved ones, but the objective was clear. It's happened, we're champions and the happiness is immense."

Messi, named the tournament's best player and top scorer, was just missing the MVP award from the final to complete a clean sweep.

"We're still not consicious of what we really did beyond becoming champions," Messi added. "Now we're really happy, celebrating, but this is a game that will go down in history."

He also was optimistic looking ahead to the World Cup in Qatar: "You always have to take advantage of the momentum when you win. I told my teammates they were the future of the national team and I wasn't wrong."

Finally, Messi paid tribute to coach Lionel Scaloni.

"It's to the merit of [Scaloni] because of everything he's done and what he's built," the forward said. "The process with him started three years ago and it's been constant growth.

 "He knew how to build a spectacular group, a winning group. He deserves the recognition. It's been a long time since Argentina were champions of South America and we've won it again under him."

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